How to Play a 24-Hole Tremolo Harmonica

Updated April 17, 2017

The 24-hole tremolo harmonica is a double-reed musical instrument. Each set of holes on the harmonica allows air to pass over two reeds, one reed tuned slightly higher than the other, to produce a note with a vibrating "tremolo" tone. Tremolo harmonicas are popular in Europe and Asia, where they are used in classical, folk and traditional music.

Hold the harmonica in one hand between the thumb and forefinger. The lowest notes should be on the left end. Cup the other hand around the harmonica for support.

Pucker your lips, and blow or draw air through one set of top and bottom paired holes to obtain a note with a tremolo effect. It is possible to play one reed alone, without tremolo, by blowing or drawing air through a single top or bottom hole.

Determine the note layout of your 24-hole tremolo harmonica. These harmonicas are made with a variety of tunings. You can refer to the web sites in the Resources below or compare each note to a reference instrument such as a piano.

Look for sheet music or harmonica tablature of your favourite tunes. Convert the information to match the tuning of your 24-hole tremolo harmonica. Figure out other simple melodies by ear.


It is easier to bend a note by playing a single reed rather than the pair.

Things You'll Need

  • 24-hole tremolo harmonica
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About the Author

Maxfield Carroll is a writer and artist whose work has appeared on various websites and in newspapers. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications and journalism.